Vol. 9, No. 2
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Preaching is delivery of God's Word in segments, or a bit at a time, even though each delivery should be as complete as required to relate God's Word and understanding of it for the subject, and for those wanting salvation. Paul warned, "...for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ" (Galatians 1:10). And he further stated, "But I certify you brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ" (Galatians 1:11-12). Today, the revelation of Jesus Christ is the New Testament, and the whole Bible.
Is there any better example for preachers today than Paul? If we say, "Yes, Jesus," then listen to Jesus, "He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day. For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak. And I know that his commandment is life everlasting: whatsoever I speak therefore, even as the Father said unto me, so I speak" (John 12:48-50). Thus, it is that all church leaders, and the preacher, should follow the conduct of Paul and Jesus, in word and deed.
Preaching can thus be defined as delivering the Word of God. Many churches today do not have evangelistic meetings, or Gospel meetings, replacing them with Lectureships, which are good also. Most do have preaching on Sunday morning and night, and sometimes on Wednesday night. Preaching is also teaching. And all Christians can at times be teaching, or in a less formatted manner, preaching. So the foregoing words are for all Christians.
Neither is preaching restricted to Sunday or Wednesday night. It can be at any time and anyplace an opportunity is presented. Paul instructed the preacher Timothy, "Preach the word, be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine" (2 Timothy 4:2). Paul is telling Timothy to be ready, and to preach, or teach, at every opportunity.
All Christians can teach, and so each should be ready to teach, and teach when an opportunity arises. Church leaders, preachers, teachers and Christians should be ready to teach God's Word at any time, anywhere. And being prepared means having a good and growing knowledge of the New Testament. And that means the church should be teaching the whole Bible.